President Donald Trump unleashed a fiery tweet directed at Iranian President Hassan Rouhani late Sunday after Rouhani warned Trump about the "mother of all wars."
What's the background?
On Sunday, Rouhani warned Trump that any hostile policy against Tehran would be unwise, because "war with Iran is the mother of all wars."
According to Iranian media, Rouhani warned, “Mr. Trump, don’t play with the lion’s tail, this would only lead to regret.”
“America should know that peace with Iran is the mother of all peace, and war with Iran is the mother of all wars,” Rouhani also reportedly added. “You are not in a position to incite the Iranian nation against Iran’s security and interests.”
Rouhani's comments were prompted by Trump's decision to withdraw the U.S. from a 2015 nuclear deal, which was intended to prevent Tehran from developing nuclear weaponry.
According to a Sunday Reuters report, Iran could face the possibility of “looming sanctions” and pressure from the U.S.
You can read more about the background here.
How did Trump respond?
In an all-caps late Sunday tweet, Trump wrote, "To Iranian President Rouhani: NEVER, EVER THREATEN THE UNITED STATES AGAIN OR YOU WILL SUFFER CONSEQUENCES THE LIKES OF WHICH FEW THROUGHOUT HISTORY HAVE EVER SUFFERED BEFORE."
"WE ARE NO LONGER A COUNTRY THAT WILL STAND FOR YOUR DEMENTED WORDS OF VIOLENCE & DEATH," Trump added. "BE CAUTIOUS!"
To Iranian President Rouhani: NEVER, EVER THREATEN THE UNITED STATES AGAIN OR YOU WILL SUFFER CONSEQUENCES THE LIKES OF WHICH FEW THROUGHOUT HISTORY HAVE EVER SUFFERED BEFORE. WE ARE NO LONGER A COUNTRY THAT WILL STAND FOR YOUR DEMENTED WORDS OF VIOLENCE & DEATH. BE CAUTIOUS!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 23, 2018
At the time of this writing, the Trump administration has yet to issue a follow-up statement to the president's late-night tweet.
Did Rouhani respond to Trump's threat?
According to an Associated Press report on Monday, Rouhani dismissed Trump's strongly worded remarks as nothing more than rhetoric.
According to the AP, "Within hours, Iran’s state-owned news agency IRNA dismissed [Trump's] tweet, describing it as a 'passive reaction' to Rouhani’s remarks."
The report also noted that Iranian political analyst Seed Leilaz said he believed Trump's remarks were simply “the storm before the calm.”
Leilaz also told the AP that he didn't worry about Trump's "remarks and tweets," and that “neither Iran, nor any other country is interested in escalating tensions in the region.”